Jul 31, 2012

(MG) Slippers of Pearl by Danyelle Leafty + RECIPE

         Today's feature is Slippers of Pearl, first in the Tales of a Cobbler Mage series by youth author Danyelle Leafty. Danyelle is also the author of the soon to be five book Fairy Godmother Dilemma series.
          Below you will find summary, review, book trailer (by me!), and a recipe. I hope you enjoy!
(Cover art by Annie Rodrigue)
(From Goodreads)
          Shoes, unlike magic, are predictable. They don’t change shape, bite, or alter a person’s destiny.
          And that’s just how Faryn likes it.
          But his Uncle Harvey has a bad habit of dying. While inconvenient, this hasn’t ever been a problem until now. Thanks to an evil witch and a poisoned apple turnover, Harvey is dead again—permanently this time.
          As his uncle’s heir, Faryn has to give up shoemaking in order to accept and refine his magic.
          Magic he never wanted.
          Unwilling to let go of his dream, but unable to escape his destiny, Faryn combines the two and discovers a knack for making magical shoes. He also learns that turning a person into a goose is a lot easier than turning her back, and that he severely underestimated how much trouble magic can be.
          The witch who killed his uncle is trying to control all the magic of the land, and it’s up to Faryn to stop her. If only he can get his magic to cooperate in time.

          Slippers of Pearl is a spirited fantasy reminiscent of Diana Wynne Jones (especially Calcifer from Howl's moving Castle), Vivian Vande Velde (her Well Timed Enchantment is the best!), and Alex Flinn (specifically Cloaked with its shoe making male protagonist). This story is steeped in fairy tales like a good, strong tea proving that Danyelle is quite the folklore connoisseur. Elements of many tales, familiar and more obscure, are brought into play and given special twists threading in and out, in and out with the main storyline.
          Told in third person limited perspective from a male protagonists view, Slippers of Pearl is great for the target middle-grade audience as well as fairy tale and fantasy lovers no matter how old. Aside from a few typos and inconsistencies, this is a highly enjoyable, imaginative read. The metaphors are clever, the setting is well laid, and the characters are such that you just want to give them a big squeeze. Except for the Queen of Shadows. And that minstrel guy. And maybe the king.
          I'm very much looking forward to the next Cobbler Mage adventure, especially to see if I can spot more fairy tale allusions!

 Food from Slippers of Pearl:
          Tea is mentioned, as well as some pretty nasty apples that play a main role in the story (nasty as in potency, not necessarily appearance), but there is one specific food that starts the whole adventure off. Apple turnover.
"After he cleared away the paper and string, he found before him an apple turnover. It was said to be the epitome of perfection in turnovers, all crisp and golden. With the spicy scent of apples in the air, Harvey took a bite of what was to be his final doom."
--Slippers of Pearl, Chapter 6
And so, here is a scrumptious apple turnover recipe.
Only, DO NOT use enchanted apples. Nothing good ever comes of that.
Apple Turnovers
(from Dorothy Bayes @ Taste of Home)

(photo from Taste of Home)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cold butter, divided
1/4 cup ice water
1/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 medium tart apples, peeled and thinly sliced
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons beaten egg
1-1/2 teaspoons water
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon water

In a small bowl, combine flour and salt; cut in 1/4 cup butter until crumbly.
Gradually add water, tossing with a fork until a ball forms.
On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a 12-in. x 6-in. rectangle.
Cut remaining butter into thin slices.
Starting at a short side of dough, arrange half of the butter slices over two-thirds of rectangle to within 1/2 in. of edges.
Fold unbuttered third of dough over middle third.
Fold remaining third over the middle, forming a 6-in. x 4-in. rectangle.
Roll dough into a 12-in. x 6-in. rectangle.
Repeat steps of butter layering and dough folding, ending with a 6-in. x 4-in. rectangle.
Wrap in plastic wrap; refrigerate for 15 minutes.
Roll dough into a 12-in. x 6-in. rectangle.
Fold in half lengthwise and then widthwise.
Wrap in plastic wrap; refrigerate for 1 hour.
Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch and cinnamon.
Add apples and lemon juice; toss to coat.
Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly.
Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 5-10 minutes or until apples are tender, stirring often.
Remove from the heat.
In a small bowl, combine egg and water.
Roll dough into a 12-in. square; cut into four squares.
Brush with half of the egg mixture.
Spoon about 1/4 cup filling on half of each square; fold dough over filling.
Press edges with a fork to seal. Place on an un-greased baking sheet.
Brush with remaining egg mixture.
With a sharp knife, cut three small slits in the top of each turnover.
Bake at 450° for 17-22 minutes or until golden brown.
Remove to a wire rack. Combine glaze ingredients; drizzle over turnovers.
Serve warm.
Yield: 4 servings.
 Places to visit Danyelle:

* Blog
* Wattpad
* Tumbler


  1. This book sounds really good! So does the recipe! =) Hmm... now the question is, am I dieting today?


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